excerpt from 'Music and manners; personal reminiscences and sketches of character' pp. 318-319 (206 words)

excerpt from 'Music and manners; personal reminiscences and sketches of character' pp. 318-319 (206 words)

part of

Music and manners; personal reminiscences and sketches of character

original language

urn:iso:std:iso:639:ed-3:eng

in pages

318-319

type

text excerpt

encoded value

One day he [Johann Strauss] received the Empress's command to attend with his band at "Tsarkoë-Selo," and to perform before her Majesty in the park of that Imperial summer resort. Upon his arrival there he was informed by the Chamberlain on duty that he would have to rehearse the morceaux of his programme thrice before playing them to the Czarina. His amazement at so unprecedented a request found vent in eager inquiries as to its motive; but no explanation was vouchsafed to him. Such were Her Majesty's orders, and he had nothing to do but to comply with them. Still greater waxed his astonishment when he observed that during the three rehearsals an empty Court carriage was drawn by a pair of horses slowly backwards and forwards in front of his orchestra. During the final performance, however, the meaning of this mysterious proceeding became apparent to him. Owing to a sharp attack of gout, the Empress was compelled to recline in a carriage, with her foot on a cushion, throughout the concert; and the object of the three rehearsals had been to accustom the horses to the sounds produced by a full string-band, lest, haply, they should take fright and bolt with their Imperial mistress.

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excerpt from 'Music and manners; personal reminiscences and sketches of character' pp. 318-319 (206 words)

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